Public option advocates are settling on Rahm Emanuel as the villain in the death of the public option. Here's Chris Bowers, with a model anti-Rahm rant.
Why? Because, er, that's the plan, according to Ezra Klein. It makes sense. Harry Reid can't afford very much liberal hatred, if he's going to manage to get reelected next year. And, while Ezra doesn't say that the White House is in on it, I wouldn't be surprised -- better for the Chief of Staff to get the blame than the president.
Ezra, and Matt Yglesias, are correct, of course, that scapegoating is beside the point. This is very simple: it's always looked as if the votes might not be there for even a weak public option, and guess what? The votes weren't there.
But I'm sure that everyone, including Rahm Emanuel, will be happy to have the WH Chief of Staff take the "blame" for the most important liberal accomplishment since LBJ was president. But as I've said before, this sort of thing does tend to add up, and when Rahm visits his dentist's office in the wrong way or whatever, he's not going to survive it.
This does bring up one crucial question: are vicuna coats kosher?